Dry January means less water than normal in California snow

Sean de Guzman, chief of snow surveys for the California Department of Water Resources, right, places the snowpack measuring tube of a scale held by DWR's Anthony Burdock, center, as DWR's Andy Reising, left, looks on during the second snow survey of the season held at Phillips Station near Echo Summit, Calif., Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2022. The survey found the snowpack at 48.5 inches with 19 inches of snow water content. That's 109% of the historical average at this time of the year. But statewide, the water in the snowpack is 92%. California Department of Water Resources via AP/Kenneth James photo
Kathleen RonayneThe Associated PressThe water contained in California’s mountain snow is now lower than the historical average after a January without significant rain or snow – a dramatic reversal from December that demonstrates the state’s challenges in managing its water supply.Snow totals updated Tuesday, Feb. 1, by the state Department of Water Resources show the amount of water in the Sierra Nevada mountain’s snowpack is at 92% of what’s normal for this date. In December, heavy rain and snow left the state with 160% of its average snow water content.“Our climate is experiencing these volatile shifts from wet to dry year after year, and even month after month,” Sean de Guzman, manager of the department’s snow surveys and water supply forecasting secti
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